Close

Our surveys come with superpowers ⚡

Blog Compare

Formstack vs Google Forms: A Detailed Comparison

Kate Williams

Last Updated:  

6 March 2024

8 min read

Choosing the perfect form builder for you can be a bit of a hassle, especially when your mind is conflicted in a battle of Formstack vs Google Forms.

Do you go for the free and familiar or the feature-rich and customizable one?

Don’t worry if you’re confused. We will look into both platforms’ features, strengths, and weaknesses and give you all the data you need to make an informed decision.

Here’s a table of comparison for a quick sneak peek!

FeaturesFormstackGoogle Forms
Best ForLogic and BranchingFree Form Builder
G2 Reviews Rating4.4 (399)4.6 (42k)
Intuitive Interface
Offline Forms
Mobile First Surveys
Insert Images & Videos
Conditional Logic
Analytics
Field Bottle Necks
HIPAA
Starting Pricing $29/monthFree

(Psst…If you want an even better alternative, there’s a table at the end that compares:

For the rest of us, let’s start with an overview.

What is Formstack?

formstack-homepage-to-compare-it-with-google-forms
Source: formstack.com

Formstack, created by Ade Olonoh in 2006, has evolved as a workflow automation software. The platform lets you create forms and surveys, prepare documents, and collect e-signatures effortlessly.

From conditional logic that adapts your form based on responses to workflow automation that makes your tasks as easy as pie, Formstack helps you create forms that work as hard as you do!

Let’s look at the form builder’s key elements that make it a sought-after tool in the market.

Key Features

1. Form Builder

Design mobile-friendly forms and increase survey completion with the Save and Resume feature. Plus, you can switch providers with the Form Importer. Handle hanging options with Smart lists and enhance brand visibility with the custom subdomains.

Also, personalize the questions per the target audience or individual customer with advanced conditional logic features.

2. Analytics and Reporting

You can upload and collect different formats and optimize the forms with the Conversion Kit. Easily create custom visual reports and add graphs and charts. You can pinpoint the issues with the help of Bottle Neck and enable UTM tracking. Email Notifications, Filed validation, and partial Submission are other perks.

3. Documents and eSignatures

You can easily create custom agreements, proposals, and contracts with Formstack’s document. These are also HIPAA compliant, ensuring safe and secure handling of sensitive patient information. You also get customizable templates and advanced data routing to create multiple documents from a single chunk of data.

Formstack Sign saves you the time waiting for signatures. It lets your respondents or customers sign a document from any device.

4. Team and Collaboration

Supervise access with User Permissions and streamline them with Approvals. Formstack also lets you create a dynamic workflow and organize data with Portals.

Pros

Ease of Use: Customers praise the intuitive interface and ease of setup. The forms are self-explanatory and require no coding knowledge to build.

Cons

Pricing: Formstack can be a bit pricey for those on a budget, especially when it has a free contender like Google Forms.

G2 Rating: 4.4/5 (399 Reviews)

If you have tried Formstack and want other options, why don’t you check out this list of the best Formstack Alternatives?

What is Google Forms?

google-froms-homepage
Source: google.com/forms/about/

Google Forms is a free online form builder available to anyone with a Google account. No subscription fees or complex setup here! The platform offers a clean and intuitive interface that can be steered by anyone, from a beginner to a Form pro!

The best part about it is its integration with the Google Suite. Anyone with access can join in and edit the form simultaneously.

Let’s look at these points in detail:

Key Features

1. Free and Effortless

There are no subscription fees or complicated setup processes. Log in to your Google account and dive into form-building without financial commitments.

This straightforward setup eliminates the need for lengthy registration forms or payment details.

2. Effortless Collaboration

Collaborate effortlessly with multiple users, allowing for real-time edits and form updates. This feature is especially beneficial for team projects, facilitating efficient communication and idea sharing among team members.

You can share the forms with a specific individual or a broad audience via a website, link, or email.

Whether you are working on a group assignment, conducting a team meeting, or brainstorming ideas for an upcoming project, the platform makes it easy to collaborate and share feedback in real time.

3. Seamless Integration with Google

Google Forms seamlessly integrates with other Google services, providing users with a cohesive experience across the Google ecosystem. This integration enhances productivity and simplifies data management processes.

You have Google Drive for storage, Sheets for analytics, and Workspace for business communication and collaboration.

Pro

  • Free and Easy to Use: Obviously! Need I say more?

Con

  • Limited Customization: Compared to its contenders, Google Forms has fewer features and customization options.

G2 Rating: Workspace- 4.6/5 (4.2k Reviews)

Now, for more options, check out this list of Google Forms Alternatives.

Let’s compare the two form builders on the most important aspects.

Formstack vs Google Forms: A Seven-Point Comparison

1. Form Features and Customization

Formstack

  • Smart Lists: With this feature, you can manage data lists, such as contacts or products, within Formstack forms. You can also effortlessly import your forms using the Form Importer.
  • Conditional Logic: Keep your surveys to the point. Show only the questions that require the respondents’ attention according to their previous answers.
  • Form Design Tips: Access expert guidance on form design best practices with Formstack’s comprehensive tips and resources, covering form length, field types, and branding, empowering users to create intuitive and effective forms that enhance user experiences and drive higher form conversions.
  • User-Friendly Design: Craft professional-looking forms with ease using the intuitive drag-and-drop builder. Customize themes and CSS to match your brand’s aesthetic and ensure accessibility with compliant forms.

Google Forms

  • Personalization: Make the forms your own by adding images, changing fonts, and adjusting question settings. Users can add a personal touch to their forms with options to include header images.
  • Advanced Summary: You can use detailed reports of the responses, complete with charts and pivot tables, for enhanced data visualization.
  • Form Publisher: Google Forms offers the add-on, automatically generating documents, such as Google Docs or PDFs, from form responses.
  • Anonymous Responses: It allows users to collect anonymous responses, which can increase response rates and ensure respondent anonymity.

2. Ease of Use

Formstack

  • The drag-and-drop interface is relatively self-explanatory. Users also praise Formstack’s responsiveness.
  • While it is not overly complex, The platform has a slightly steeper learning curve when compared to Google Forms.
  • And again, if you’re a beginner, the advanced customization features might be a little overwhelming.

Google Forms

  • Compared to Formstack, Google Forms is incredibly easy to learn, even if you don’t have any prior experience.
  • The interface is pretty straightforward and can be easily navigated.
  • Plus, it enables multiple users to collaborate in real-time.

3. Templates

Fromstack

  • With over 300 versatile templates, you can easily find the perfect template to suit your project requirements.
  • While templates serve as a starting point, Formstack allows extensive customization to tailor them to your specific needs and branding.
  • But, pre-built templates are a part of Formstack’s paid plans. This makes it a bit inaccessible for those looking to stay with a free plan.

Google Forms

  • Offers a small section of basic templates for surveys and quizzes. You won’t get anything advanced here.
  • Template customization options are limited as compared to Formstack.
  • The best part? Everything is free. All you need is a Google account.

4. Integration

Formstack

Formstack integrates with a lot of your favorite apps. Check out their integration page for a detailed view of each category. Here, I’ll include a few popular ones.

  • For payments, they have Paypal, Chargify, and Stripe.
  • In CRM, you get ActiveCampaign, Drip, and Nimble, to name a few.
  • When it comes to CSM, you have Hubspot, Drupal, and WordPress.

Google Forms

  • You can integrate your forms with Google Suite. This includes Drive, Gmail, Docs, Meet, Calendar, Sheets, and Slides.
  • While some basic automation is possible with add-ons, the functionalities are not as diverse as Formstack offers.

5. HIPAA Compliance

Formstack

  • You get a HIPAA-compliant custom-made account, including data encryption and enhanced security.
  • The platform ensures HIPAA compliance with a Business Associate Agreement (BAA)

Google Forms

  • Those who have not signed a BAA are not allowed to use Google Forms when it comes to PHI.
  • HIPAA BAA is made available electronically through the admin console.

6. Security

Formstack

  • Formstack adheres to strict security protocols, including compliance with HIPAA PCI, GDPR, and WCAG standards.
  • Your forms are safeguarded with multiple security measures. This includes invisible reCAPTCHA and secure passwords.
  • That’s not it! Documents are protected with SSL, encryption, and firewalls to ensure their safety and confidentiality.

Google Forms

  • It meets industry standards like ISO/IEC, SOC, and HIPAA, keeping your information safe in the cloud without needing local files.
  • Your files on Google Drive and in Forms are always encrypted, whether they’re being sent or stored. This means your data stays secure and private from any unauthorized access.
  • Google Forms follows strict privacy rules, ensuring your data remains yours alone. Your information is never used for ads, and Google never sells your details to anyone else.

7. Offline Forms

Formstack

  • In a remote area? Weak connectivity? It’s not an issue if you have Formstack Go!
  • Your data automatically syncs when your team members reconnect. It is accessible, integrated, and highly efficient!
  • You can download their app to access and submit your forms online.

Google forms

  • Google Forms does not offer offline services.
  • It is primarily cloud-based and requires you to be connected to the internet always.

Since that’s done, let me talk about an alternative that gives you the best of both worlds. SurveySparrow! Don’t take my word for it. Here are a few facts to back this up.

Why is SurveySparrow a Better Alternative?

SurveySparrow is an experience management platform that lets you create conversational forms that boost engagement rates and help you reap a 40% higher response rate.

It does not end with creating. You can share via multiple platforms, collect data, visualize, and analyze it to make informed decisions based on the insights.

Key Features

  • Single Page Forms: No more tedious long surveys. With Single page forms, you can keep it simple. Combine conversational and single-page formats for an interactive experience.
  • Conversational forms: Great conversations create beautiful relationships. What better way than chat-like surveys to keep your customers happy and coming for more?
  • Display and Skip Logic: Ask only the questions needed and skip those irrelevant ones as per the previous answers by respondents.
  • Templates: You get 1000+ pre-designed survey templates with pre-populated fields that you can use or customize according to your needs. Use the wing feature to expand, rephrase, reword, or edit the questions. Make them your own!
    Here is a sample template created with SurveySparrow. Feel free to use it!

Beta Testing Feedback Form Template

  • White Label: Add your brand’s logo, color, theme, and design to customize it and give it a personal touch.
  • Offline Forms: use the offline app to collect data even when not connected to the internet. You can connect your SurveySparrow account to a Kiosk and survey away!
  • Executive Dashboard: Visualize your data in a comprehensive dashboard with different types of charts and graphs. Add data from multiple surveys and do an in-depth analysis.
  • HIPAA Compliance: SurveySparrow is one of the best HIPAA-compliant online survey tools. You can ensure high security by using Advanced Encryption Standard (AES) with 256-bit keys to encrypt your data, both in transit and at rest. Using HMACSHA-256 message authentication codes and encrypted connections is an effective way to ensure the safe transmission of data.

Pricing

Formstack might be a bit pricy for you if you are on a budget.

Now, you’ll say: Isn’t Google Forms Free? Yes, it is. And it is perfect for basic forms. But do you just want basic? Think of it.

What you need is something that brings you the best of both worlds. You saw the features, and here’s a detailed pricing plan.

Pricing PlansStarting PriceFeatures
Basic Plan$19Multiple question types and basic features
Business Plan$79Advanced features
Professional Plan$249Additional features
CX Suite$249NPS, CSAT, CES surveys- measuring customer loyalty, satisfaction, and effort scores
360 AssessmentsCustom QuoteResearch-backed question banks, advanced performance analytics, and group reports
Reputation Management$0Limited free version; $79 for full features

G2 Rating: 4.4 / 5 (1903 reviews)

Why don’t you give it a try? A 14-day free trial will provide you with an idea of the tool.

Table of Comparison: SurveySparrow vs Formstack vs Google Forms

FeaturesSurveySparrowFormstackGoogle Forms
Best ForLogic and BranchingFree Form Builder
G2 Reviews Rating4.4 (1903)4.4 (399)4.6 (42k)
Intuitive Interface
Conversational Forms
Offline Forms ✔
Mobile First Surveys ✔
Insert Images & Videos ✔
Conditional Logic ✔
Analytics ✔
HIPAA ✔
AI Surveys
Starting Pricing$19/month $29/monthFree

Wrap Up

So, do we have a winner for Formstack vs Google Forms? Depends right? The best one depends on you and your needs.

So, if you need top-notch security and advanced features, Formstack could be your best bet. But if you’re on a tight budget and need something simple, Google Forms is worth checking out. If you want conversational, engaging forms that reap responses, go for SurveySparrow.

Choose wisely on what works best for you!

Happy surveying!

Kate Williams

Content Marketer at SurveySparrow

Start your free trial today

No Credit Card Required. 14-Day Free Trial

Try For Free

Request a Demo

Want to learn more about SurveySparrow? We'll be in touch soon!

Request Demo